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The 5 little moments that made Star Wars Resistance great

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Jan 26, 2020

On Sunday, Star Wars Resistance crossed the finish line after two seasons on Disney XD. Amid all the racing and dogfights against the First Order, the show had a quality that was easy to take for granted. Resistance distinguished itself from its Lucasfilm Animation spiritual predecessors, The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels, not just because of its lusher cell-shaded 3D aesthetic but because it dwelled more on picturesque slice-of-life, tiny pleasures, and characters.

Set before and during the most recent Star Wars trilogy, from The Force Awakens to The Last Jedi, the action of Resistance was staged on and around the Colossus. The Colossus, a former Imperial space station that was converted into a dwelling, settled on a water-covered planet with a bustling economy built on salvaging, street food, and racing. After staying stagnant atop the ocean throughout the show's first season, the Colossus returned to its space station roots and sailed into the stars away from the First Order.

The show's epic sky battles against TIE-Defenders and Star Destroyers, spy work, and skirmishes with stormtroopers were exhilarating, but they were not as important as the tiny moments that didn't take place on the battleground. Tapping into the smaller picture was nothing new in Lucasfilm Animation (see "Mystery on Chopper Base" in Star Wars Rebels), but Resistance emphasized the micro-moments throughout its two season-run to illuminate modest livelihoods.

Here are some of the great micro-moments of Resistance. These do not include battle scenes against evil, but just moments of survival without firing back.

Hype Fazon hitting the arcade

When the Colossus is up on the run in "Live Fire," Hype Fazon (Donald Faison) dismisses himself from combat training in a huff. He hits the arcade. His friend, sister-in-arms Torra Doza (Myra Velasco), gently talks with him and validates his concerns, and he confides in her his childhood memory of the Empire. The talk restores his morale and he returns to training. It’s a reminder that fighters need cool-downs and simple pleasures like video games.

Neeku's sky

Sweet Neeku, with that uppity voice of Josh Brener, that green Nikto mechanic who takes things too literally. He's a simpleminded Colossus fellow and sometimes annoying best friend. But he makes sure that you're hydrated. When Kaz (Christopher Sean) is dry out of credits, Neeku buys him water. These tokens of kindness could easily be overlooked, but Kaz meditates on Neeku's bits of benevolence, especially when Neeku pays for the healing spice for a fugitive child.

Just when you think Neeku can't get any sweeter, his wholesomeness reaches an apotheosis when he scraps together an entire sky-projection for the Colossus community in "Hunt on Celsor 3," when he realizes that one of his fellow civilians, Aunt Z (Tovah Feldshuh), misses the sky and fresh air. He hears that their pain isn't simply derived from a lack of necessities like food and water, but also something deeper: the feeling of breathing and being at home and drinking in the scenery.

Awkward elevator moment with Opeepit

When Kaz and Synara (Nazneen Contractor) are escaping the First Order, they wind up in an elevator with a puff-head janitor by the name of Opeepit. His little conversation with Synara and Kaz reveals he's still down about the First Order confiscating his sweeper. You don’t know the janitor's name, Opeepit unless you search it up. But he makes an impression, with his puffball head, cute googles, and his grumpy disposition. He doesn't amount to anything extraordinary; he’s just a background janitor. But an awkward elevator moment like this reveals the interiority of a civilian on the Colossus. Beyond the goofy gag, it's a moment of social intimacy with a stranger. There's a refreshing quality in the way Resistance validates what seems to be a banal concern.

Synara and the fish-seagull

When Synara is jettisoned to safety away from the Colossus, she sits on a floating pod waiting for her fellow pirates. Before she is pulled back into pirate life, she drinks in the serenity and the scenery. Fish-like birds circle her. She smiles and she pets one before the light of her rescue ship disturbs the tranquility. It's a vulnerable wordless moment for a pirate bred from a hardy background. At heart, Synara doesn't want to live a callous lifestyle and would take any opportunity for peace.

Imanuel Doza and Venisa's farewell

At the end of "The Rendezvous Point," Captain Imanuel Doza (Jason Hightower) fondly gazes at a holo-conversation of him and his absent wife, Venisa Doza (Tasia Valenza). Although their chance of a reunion was spoiled by the First Order, the memory reminds him and his daughter that Venisa needs to serve the larger picture, the Resistance, while he prefers to protect himself and Torra at their Colossus domicile, sticking to the smaller picture.

This tender recording acquires significant dimensions when Venisa reunites with her husband in "Rebuilding the Resistance." Although the couple greets each other with respect, their dialogue and body language suggest their marriage was fraught with disagreements on how to face the war. The contrast between a tender recording with their in-person tension illustrates an often overlooked price of war and sacrifice, how war can bleed into personal relationships, especially for two adults who lived a previous war differently. Fortunately, Venisa and Imanuel both find mutual footing when Captain Doza becomes more involved in the larger picture and an active Resistance ally.

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